Rule of law and tolerance for religious diversity were two of the qualities of life in Indonesia that Barack Obama praised on his visit there a year ago.
You have to wonder what he had been drinking.
During a brutal and enthusiastically videoed attack on an Ahmadiyah home on the island of Java, in which three men died and five others were badly injured, Dani bin Misra was filmed bashing a man’s skull in with a rock. He was sentenced to three months in jail. An Ahmadi man was sentenced to six months jail for wounding an attacker during a raid on his family home.
A key measure of the level of justice and compassion in any society is how it treats its minorities — often its most vulnerable citizens. On that score, Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim country, is failing. In the past year, public violence against religious minorities, who together make up about 12% of the 240 million population, has been relentless: there has been a slew of incidents, from burnings and bombings of churches to attacks by radical Muslims on moderates. The authorities appear unable or unwilling to firmly intervene. …
Suryadharma Ali, Indonesia’s Minister of Religious Affairs, was unapologetic in tone: he said Indonesia respects religious freedom, but that minorities could not use that freedom to “completely modify” Islamic beliefs.
In other words, you can expect tolerance if you are a Muslim. If not, and someone comes to your house to murder you and your family, don’t expect the courts or the government to be concerned.